America's 10 Unhealthiest Presidents
9. Theodore Roosevelt26th President (1901-1909)
Blindness: A frail and sickly child, Roosevelt was encouraged to do lots of physical activity in hopes of alleviating his asthma and other ailments. Boxing became one of Roosevelt's hobbies, which he continued into adulthood. However, after being elected to the White House, he suffered one major injury when a blow to the left eye detached his retina, leaving him blind in that side.
Deafness: Suffering from a throat infection, Roosevelt developed otitis media, an inflammation of the middle ear. The subsequent operation left him deaf in his left ear.
Bullet wound: On the campaign trail in 1912, Roosevelt was shot by a deranged saloonkeeper. The gun was originally pointed at the president's head, but a bystander saw the weapon and jolted the gunman's arm, causing the bullet to hit Roosevelt in the chest. Luckily, both a 50-page speech and a steel glasses case, held in his breast pocket, absorbed some of the impact and deflected the shot, saving Roosevelt's life. But rather than undergo surgery to remove the bullet, Roosevelt deemed the operation too risky and carried the bullet in his chest for the rest of his life.
Malaria: On an expedition into the Amazon rainforest in 1913, Roosevelt contracted malaria, a condition made worse by an infected leg wound. These injuries resulted in chest pains, a high fever, and delirium. Though Roosevelt didn't die, he returned to America in a decrepit physical state, and for many years was often unable to leave his bed.
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